What is Receiving Stolen Goods?

If you are charged, let our responsive team of experts manage your defence. Contact Nott and Co Lawyers. We are the most responsive criminal lawyers in NSW and will get you a straight answer in 24 hours. Best possible outcomes at best fixed fee prices.

The offence is in section 188 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) which reads:

(1) Whosoever receives, or disposes of, or attempts to dispose of, any property, the stealing whereof amounts to a serious indictable offence, knowing the same to have been stolen, shall be guilty of a serious indictable offence, and may be indicted, either as an accessory after the fact, or for a substantive offence, and in the latter case whether the principal offender has been previously tried or not, or is amenable to justice or not, and in either case is guilty of an offence:

What The Prosecution Must Prove

The Prosecution must prove each of the following matters beyond reasonable doubt if charged with Receiving Stolen Goods:

  • That you accepted or received property;
  • That property was stolen;
  • The property was stolen in a manner that amounted to a serious indictable offence; and
  • You knew the property was stolen.

Penalties For Receiving Stolen Goods

If the matter is heard in the Local Court, 2 years in prison is the maximum sentence. Under certain conditions, the penalties jump dramatically if the matter is heard in the District Court. For example, if the property is a motor vehicle or a motor vehicle part (12 years prison), or a vessel or a vessel part OR (b) in the case of any other property, to imprisonment for 10 years.

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Defences For Receiving Stolen Goods

Some of the possible defences for Receiving Stolen Goods charges available can include:

  • To argue that you did not actually receive the property;
  • To argue that the property was not stolen;
  • To argue that the property was not stolen in a way that amounted to a strictly indictable offence; or
  • If somebody forced you to act in a certain way due to the circumstances, or the threats of another forced you to do something, you may be able to argue duress.


  • Where you were suffering from a mental illness at the time of the offence (mental illness)
  • Where your conduct was necessary to prevent serious injury or danger (necessity)
  • Where someone threatened or coerced you into committing fraud (duress)

Defence Of Human Trafficking Charges

Full time imprisonment is an option open to the Courts, so the charge of Human Trafficking is a serious one. Nott and Co Lawyers will defend your rights if charged. Our experts can negotiate with police, seek to have facts amended, run a dispute facts hearing if required and provide you with a robust defence if you wish to plea not guilty.

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Goods In Custody